Consuelo Saah Baehr was born in El Salvador to French/Palestinian parents. At age five she joined her father and five uncles in Washington, D.C. where they ran the prestigious boutique department store, Jean Matou, a favorite of Bess Truman and Jackie Kennedy. Convent boarding schools came next and George Washington University. After college she began writing advertising copy for the Macy Corp. Marriage and three children followed and the writing was silent until a stunning Op-Ed piece in The New York Times brought a flurry of offers from book publishers. The result was the personal memoir, Report From The Heart (Simon & Schuster). Four novels followed: Best Friends (Delacorte/Dell); Nothing To Lose (Putnam's); Daughters (Delacorte/Dell) and 100 Open Houses soon to be a Kindle original.
Daughters, a historical family saga set in pre-war Jerusalem, has been translated into 15 languages. It was published as a Kindle book in late August.
Interview With Consuelo:
What are your favorite humor books?
--I love Fran Leibowitz: Metropolitan Life, Social studies. 2) Nora Ephron, I feel bad about my neck, I remember nothing. 3) The cartoons of Roz Chast in the New Yorker. I'm sure I'll think of ten more the minute I send this.
How much of your humor is based on real life experiences?
--All of it. I can only tolerate the humor that comes out of everyday life, even the tragedies.
Do you feel being digitally epublished allows you to be more creative with your writing choices?
--Absolutely. I've been traditionally published several times and the process just saps the will to continue. E-publishing makes writing a viable, enriching activity once again. Yipee!
If they made a movie out of one of your books, what actors would play the main characters?
--One of my books, Nothing To Lose was optioned for a movie but never made. I'd like Johnny Depp to play Luis and maybe Ellen Page (Juno) to play April. Of course Ellen would have to begin in a fat suit but she has the quirky delivery that would work.
What should readers expect from a Consuel Saah Baehr book?
--Readers should expect to feel secure and in very good hands. They should expect to be transported and opened up to new ideas and also to recognize some of the things they can't verbalize but know are true.
If people judged your books by their covers, what hijinks would they miss out on?
--The cover for Nothing To Lose telegraphs the tyranny of weight, but there is much more to the transformation of the main character and also the setting of a large old-fashioned department store is just a crazy microcosm of life.
What's the funniest part of your everyday life?
--I live alone and at some point during the day I say out loud what I am thinking so that I can give it importance. There are so many thoughts and impressions running on a loop and if you stop and say them, you get an amazing, hilarious but interesting snapshot of how crazy thinking can be.
If www.theonion.com wrote a fake headline about your life, what would it be?
--You forgot to refrigerate after opening. Get cracking!
If you weren't writing humorous books, what would you be doing for a living? Stand up comedy.
--I've done a lot of other jobs, copywriting, raising kids, corporate fund raising, but I was really just doing stand up.
Why don't you think there's more humorous books out there?
--Are you kidding? That's the hardest thing to do. Almost impossible to do well. If anyone can write good humor, they are like god. No really.
What's next for your fans?
--For my fans - and I do have a few - I am in the middle of a comic crime book with a woman sleuth. Also in the process of "novelizing" a screenplay that is very relevant for today's job crisis.
Thinner Thighs In Thirty Years (Kindle Single)
Nothing To Lose
One Hundred Open Houses